Everything you need to know about SPF: from our Exeter skincare specialists

Surprisingly, not many people understand the importance of SPF. It may seem unnecessary to apply it to your skin every day but UV radiation contributes to skin ageing and let’s not forget, it’s extremely damaging. Our skincare experts, based in Exeter, are here to give you all the advice you need to make sure your skin stays healthy throughout the summer, and beyond.


SPF is essential when using retinol products

If you’re investing time and money on a good retinol, you’ll want to protect that investment with SPF. Your skin will become a lot more sensitive to UV rays and sunlight can decrease the results you see from the product. 

So, if you are using retinol on your skin or you have recently had any abrasive facial treatments or laser work done, you need to be extra careful and using SPF every day will be an even more important part of your everyday skincare routine. 

It is important to use sun protection on your skin all year round, not just when the sun comes out. So, let’s go over a few things you should know.

What is the difference between physical and chemical SPF?

There are two main types of SPF, physical and chemical. Both absorb the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays, and neither is ‘better’ than the other, they just use different active ingredients.  It also depends on your preference and what works best for your skin. 

Physical SPF (aka mineral) usually contains zinc oxide or titanium oxide. It sits on top of the skin and reflects the harmful rays. This formula tends to be better suited to sensitive skin types and more moisturising on the skin. Great for anybody with dry, dehydrated skin, but less suitable for anybody with an oily skin type. Thankfully, physical SPF formulas have come a long way and no longer leave a white cast over the skin. 

Chemical SPF absorbs into the skin and then absorbs the UV rays, converts them into heat and then releases them from the body. The active ingredients in chemical sunscreens are avobenzone, octinoxate and oxybenzone. Opting for a chemical sunscreen is a great option if you are planning on doing a lot of sport or taking part in any water activities. 

What is the best SPF?

Whether you decide to use a physical or chemical SPF, there are a few things to bear in mind.

You should always go for a broad spectrum product so that you’re protected from UVA and UVB rays and the sun protection factor should preferably be 30 or higher for maximum protection.

You might also want to look out for a non-comedogenic formula, especially if you have acne prone skin or get blocked pores easily. 

Shop Zo Skin Health SPF at Radiance

Our ZO Skin Health range offers plenty of different SPF formulas, something suitable for all of our clients. The range includes a Broad Spectrum SPF 50, Daily Sheer SPF 50, Smart Tone SPF 50 and even powder blends and primers with built-in sun protection.

If you are unsure what will best suit your skin, come into the clinic for a free consultation and we can help find your perfect SPF.